Recently inducted Hall Of Fame trainer Chris...
This Saturday in Melbourne the headline race at Sandown Racecourse is the 2014 Doveton Stakes, betting tips for the race known as the Christmas Cup found below.
Due to jump at 3:55pm as Sandown Race 6, this year’s $120,000 Listed Emma Booth Christmas Cup (1000m) attracted nine hopefuls with the markets at Ladbrokes.com.au firmly led by Lord Of The Sky.
Robbie Laing’s Danerich four-year-old returns to racing here, the stallion last seen running fourth as the beaten favourite at Moonee Valley over 1000m on August 2.
That was his second fourth place loss as the beaten odds-on fancy after eh also went down three and a half lengths to Thiamandi in the Group 3 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield in July.
Before that however he was in top form including his Group 3 Sir John Monash Stakes (1100m) win that he’ll be looking to emulate here in his first run under race conditions at the track.
The bookmakers are taking no chances with Laing’s galloper, the speedster working well at Sandown throughout the week, and Lord Of The Sky pays $2.30 to win despite his 60kg impost with Vlad Duric to ride.
He’s followed in the Doveton Stakes / Christmas Cup odds by a host of livewire chances, the race a truly open affair with none of the eight rivals paying over $17 to win.
Some of the next best fancied outside the favourite include veteran nine-year-old Eight Bills ($6.50) with a gun barrier two draw, resuming Elvstroem six-year-old Go The Knuckle ($8) and the Robbie Griffiths-trained It Is Written ($9).
So can Lord Of The Sky win back the love of the punters? Or will there be an upset Doveton Stakes result this year?
#6 Danger Close ($8)
Money coming in for Jason Warren’s rails-drawn lightweight who gets in on 54kg minimum and we’re happy to follow the money trail. This Written Tycoon gelding won three on the trot back in the autumn, including two straight here at Sandown to give him an undefeated record at the track. First-up ran third behind two nice types over 955m at Moonee Valley on November 14, where he also jumped from barrier one. Same gate back at a track he loves this time up in distance should be ideal as he’s also won four from six over the 1000m. Big chance.
#1 Lord Of The Sky ($2.30)
Deserving favourite this Group 3 winner will take some beating but the 60kg top weight will help that become possible unfortunately for the punters. He was odds-on in his two most recent runs back in the winter and ran fourth both times but Laing has been super impressed with his work since, including at Sandown this week. Will be right up there but the weight gets him beaten.
#3 Go The Knuckle ($8)
First-up run for the season for Robert Smerdon’s gelding whose last start was way back in March when runner-up in the Listed Bel Esprit Stakes (1200m) at Sandown Lakeside. Sees this side of the track for the first time but distance is good (6-2-1-2) for him and goes well fresh (6-2-1-1) so can be competitive with a bit of luck. Barrier (4) will help and Nicholas Hall jumps on for the first time since a Melbourne Cup Day failure back in 2013.
Whether you’re backing or sacking our Doveton Stakes / Christmas Cup selections on Saturday make sure you get the guaranteed best prices by betting online at Ladbrokes.com.au where a $25 deposit will earn you a $75 bonus bet this weekend!
*All odds quoted are Fixed Win from Ladbrokes.com.au and subject to change
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